Macintosh-Styled Nostalgia Machine Brings TV to the Kitchen
Nostalgia is a strange, illogical quirk of the human mind. For no rational reason, we find comfort in the pop culture and products of our past — even when their modern successors are better by every objective metric. Citizen Kane continues to top the lists of the best movies of all time, despite the fact that it is a garbage movie by today's standards. Similarly, we feel nostalgia for technologies from our past, like VHS, that frustrated us at the time. To get their nostalgia fix in a convenient way, Redditor mynameiscal built The NostalgiaBot.
The NostalgiaBot is a media player modeled after the original Apple Macintosh computer released in 1984. That 1/3 scale Mac contains the video screen and an accompanying intercom-style speaker box pumps out the sound. The NostalgiaBot sits in mynameiscal's kitchen to play videos while they cook. It runs a Telegram bot that waits for text message commands and then plays video from a library of 4:3 VHS-quality files. Though the original Macintosh couldn't play videos like this itself, the videos fit the era's aesthetic and add to the nostalgia.
Both the Macintosh and intercom enclosures were 3D-printed in PLA and designed by cgenco and m4rc3lv respectively. The brains of the operation is a Raspberry Pi Zero 2 W single-board computer and the screen is a 2.8" Waveshare LCD with a 640x480 resolution. As with its predecessor, the Pi Zero 2 W doesn't have a dedicated audio output port, so mynameiscal used a small USB speaker inside of the intercom enclosure. The result is a classy kitchen media player that scratches the nostalgia itch that we all feel.